SAN FRANCISCO -- It was the morning after the night before, but only in name. All had gone well on Tuesday night. Pedro Martinez had pitched, almost perspired and prospered. And by the time he returned to AT&T Park on Wednesday morning, he had experienced no hangover symptoms. He threw 109 pitches in anger over six innings, having thrown none in the previous 61 days. And he was pleased to say his 36-year-old muscles had responded well to the strain.
"Very good, actually," Martinez said as the Mets gathered for the final game of their series against the Giants. "A lot better than I thought. I'm not even sore, at least not yet."
That characterization was likely to change quickly. Martinez works out strenuously the day after he pitches.
"Today is a dog day, a hard day," Martinez said.
The left hamstring strain that had interrupted his fourth Mets season hadn't been an issue on Tuesday night, but he was aware of the possibility that an injury to any body part could sabotage him.
"When that happened [April 1 in his first start], it came out of nowhere," he said. "I thought I understood my mechanics completely. But now I know I can't really say 'I'm going to be healthy.'"
|Nelson Figueroa || 3-3||
|John Maine || 6-5||
|Pedro Martinez || 1-1||
|Mike Pelfrey || || 3-7||
|Oliver Perez || || 5-7||
|Johan Santana || 9-3||
|Claudio Vargas || || 2-2||
He recalled throwing the curve that preceded -- and perhaps prompted -- the injury. He had tried to do more with that pitch.
"But not that much more," he said. "I never had that happen before."
But he never has been 36 before, either.
But no comparable scenario developed on Tuesday, and Martinez produced his 28th victory in 61 starts with the Mets. He has lost 17 times. The Mets' record in his career starts with them is 32-29.
Marty Noble is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.